1. A PhD is about mastery and do I want to further master something I am already a master?
I'd like to think I have a mastery of pedagogy, technology and life long learning. Now this isn't saying there isn't more I could learn in these areas, but I do have the following education and experience in these areas;
- An undergrad degree (with honours) in Technology; a Bachelor of Technologies with specialty in database management.
- 20 years professional experience working on and building information technologies. My responsibilities in this profession are broad, best to look at my linkedin profile.
- Masters of Education with specialty in Information Technology.
- Eight years teaching adults at the College and University level; an additional three years teaching online and being deeply involved with the early stages of WikiEducator.
- Involvement in the release of eight software initiatives during this year alone. My involvement has been architect / project manager / database administrator / even programmer over all or some of these initiatives. Each of these initiative shows a mastery of pedagogy, technology and life long learning.
- Progressive video assessment; AIM language professional
- Content level single sign-on; a RESTful API enforcing authorization to learning content
- Legal Search; a federated and faceted search over seven information silos
- Taxonomy cleanup; once federated the taxonomies required alignment
- Online TV; an episodic online streaming of talking heads with focus on a specific legal subject
- Practice Manuals
- Engagement Questions; encouraging a depth of learning using existing video recourses
- Online community; CLEOnline & AIM language professional
2. I'd rather master something new (and therefore, fun), as I would otherwise become bored (see item 1). Should my Open and Networked PhD build on what I already know or should I develop a completely new area of knowing?
If you were to follow someone online who is going to invest in documenting the process of developing a new area of knowing for themselves would you rather watch them in the area of pedagogy, technology and life long learning or watch them develop a mastery of folk music and dance or building wooden boats? Keep in mind I will document my experience by using all I know in pedagogical approaches and technology. I will also engage experts in my chosen area whenever they make themselves available.